by Ray Hudson
For another perspective on the election, Ray Hudson spoke with Shinder Purewal, Political Science professor at Kwantlen Polytechnic University to get his perspective on the ridings on the eve of Monday’s election.
South Surrey White Rock:
Originally seen as a cakewalk for Dianne Watts, but now the Liberals have gone up and the NDP have dropped. It’s an interesting race between Watts and a former Surrey Council colleague Judy Higgenbotham, who stepped forward after the previous Liberal candidate withdrew.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if the liberals took this one as Higgenbotham has run here before and is a familiar name to the electorate.”
“Sukh Dhaliwal has won two elections in this riding and could be a contest between the Liberals and the NDP. If the NDP would lose a BC seat, this would be the one as the NDP support seems to be dropping now.”
“Once held by Chuck Cadman as aright of centre MP, it has gone back and forth with the NDP (37% for Liberals when they won, 40% for the NDP) but during the Ignatieff campaign Liberal support collapsed to 18%. But the Liberals have surged and it’s a tight three way race. If the NDP loses, it’ll be a big loss for them.”
Fleetwood Port Kells:
“When Gary Begg, former RCMP Inspector announced many people thought it could go NDP because they were surging. But support for the party is now sinking and the Liberals, with Ken Hardie are now surging and providing competing with Nina Grewal. Latest poll puts the decided voters at 35% for both. It’s a tight race and will be interesting to see on Monday.”
Cloverdale Langley City:
“If I had been Dianne Watts with the high profile, I would have picked this one. The riding where she is running now had Conservative support at 52% whereas Cloverdale Langley had 57% Conservative support. I don’t think there’s much of a competition in this riding.”
“If you look at the politics of the entire area, based on 2011 redistribution about 48% in the Tsawwassen and Ladner areas voted for the Conservatives, and North Delta has always been mixed and could go NDP or Conservative, but right now the competition is three way now, due to the rise of the Liberals and the competition is growing between the Liberals and the Conservatives. At the start if you had asked me if Minister Findlay could lose I would have said you were having whiskey for breakfast, but now it’s a riding where you may be amazed on Oct 19.”
If I could predict this election I would be a millionaire. It’s particularly difficult to assess the constituencies with major polls, and still many people decide on their vote once they get to the polling station. It will be an interesting election and nobody thought it would go this way, particularly for the NDP. Nationally the rise of the NDP came after Alberta’s NDP victory, and nobody could explain why they went up nationally. Now people are blaming the niqab issue for the decline of Mulcair’s popularity. I don’t buy that. Trudeau has taken the same issue and the same stand yet he hasn’t declined in Quebec and elsewhere. What I’m hearing from my counterparts in Quebec, Mulcaire started losing parts of Quebec when he became fiscally conservative, saying he was going to stick to balanced budgets. The Partis Quebecois government is doing the same austerity measures in Quebec and they were hoping for somebody who would take a different course at the federal levels. Unfortunately he sounded more like Harper on this issue of fiscal conservatism. That’s when the NDP started losing ground.